Jodi Ohlsen Read makes Shepherd’s Way Farms’ award-winning sheep milk cheeses by hand in small batches on the Read family farm.
Among the first farmstead sheep milk cheesemakers, Shepherd’s Way began crafting and marketing its first cheese, Friesago in 1998. A second cheese, Shepherd’s Hope was introduced in 1999 and the sought-after Big Woods Blue was added in 2003. Hidden Falls, Shepherd’s Ricotta, Morcella are more recent additions, made in smaller batches.
Shepherd’s Way Cheese is sold nationwide at cheese shops, co-ops, and select grocery stores. In Minnesota, Steven and the boys also sell Shepherd’s Way cheese and other products at the Mill City Farmer’s Market in Minneapolis and the St. Paul Farmer’s Market in St. Paul.
Friesago is a natural rind semi-aged sheep milk cheese with a dense texture and pleasantly mild flavor and a slightly nutty finish. A multiple award-winner, Friesago is versatile as a table cheese and as a cooking cheese. Called a “must try” by Food and Wine magazine!
Friesago wheels average ten pounds.
Shepherd’s Hope is a unique mild, fresh cheese with a gentle citrus note at the finish. Another multiple award-winner -- a 2012 ACS award winner, in fact – Shepherd’s Hope is a chef and retail favorite. Unlike any other fresh sheep milk cheese, it has a shelf life of eight to ten weeks after production. Shepherd’s Hope is exceptional with a crisp Chardonnay and a fresh baguette or in a tomato basil salad.
Available in two versions – Original and Organic Garlic/Herb – Shepherd’s Hope wheels are approximately four pounds, shipped vacuum sealed.
Big Woods Blue is a full-flavored sheep milk blue cheese. Named one of the best blue cheeses in the country, Big Woods Blue blends spicy notes of a blue with the creaminess of sheep milk for a complex flavor. Finishing top in its class at ACS more than once -- and a 2011 ACS award winner -- Big Woods Blue has been widely praised by food writers nationwide. It pairs nicely with a rich Port or a sweet Muscadet.
Big Woods Blue wheels are approximately six pounds, wrapped in foil.
Hidden Falls is a blended milk cheese, made with sheep milk and organic, pasture-based cow milk. Hidden Falls has a soft, delicate bloomy rind that ripens the cheese inward. With a lactic creamy interior, qualities of citrus and wildflower present initially with a lingering note of woodsy mushrooms.
Hidden Falls wheels are three to four pounds, wrapped in paper. ***LIMITED AVAILABILITY – Preorders recommended***
Morcella is a seasonal, soft-ripened sheep milk cheese with local morel mushrooms. Made in small batches with only spring and summer milk, Morcella is a creamy, earthy cheese with a mottled bloomy rind. Like the morel mushrooms it is named for, Morcella is only around for a limited time (through September). Pre-orders possible.